Debate camp

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A debate camp or debate institute is a training workshop for high school and collegiate debaters. Usually these camps are held over the summer and last between two and eight weeks. While once attended by only highly competitive policy debaters, many high school students now attend debate institutes, and often urban debate leagues will pay for the students to go to these camps.


During instruction, students are divided up into different focus groups, or "labs". The instructor(s) is called the "lab leader". Each group has its own focus and goal during the day or week. The lab leader will guide them through the topic and how to argue it. Many institutes will divide students into labs based on skill level and experience. Many institutes offer specialized "advanced" or "scholars" workshops, to which acceptance is highly limited.

Often there are mini tournaments at the end of each camp, and students are given speaker and team awards to cap off the institute.

Popular Camps & Institutes[edit]

Camp Hosts Website
Cal National Debate Institute (CNDI) University of California Berkeley [1]
Capitol Debate Summer Camps Multiple locations nationwide [2]
Champion Briefs Institute (CBI) Nova Southeastern University and Colleyville Heritage High School [3]
Climb the Mountain Speech and Debate Camps Pacific Lutheran University and Explorer West Middle School [4]
Concordia Debate Institute (CDI) Concordia College [5]
Debate Camp Canada (DCC) Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Montreal, Ottawa, Halifax, Canada and Hartford, CT [6]
Digital Debate Camp (DDC) Online, Stephen Murray [7]
Discourse Debate Camp Toronto, Canada and Vancouver, Canada [8]
Debate and Oral Interpretation Camp Mount Marty College [9]
Eddie Conway Liberation Institute (ECLI) Morgan State University [10]
George Mason Debate Institute Fairfax, Virginia [11]
Georgia Debate Institute Athens, Georgia
Gonzaga Debate Institute Gonzaga University [12]
Harvard Debate Council Summer Workshops Harvard University [13]
Hoosier Debate Camp @ Indiana University Indiana University [14]
Kentucky National Debate Institute University of Kentucky [15]
Liberty Debate Institute Liberty University [16]
Jayhawk Debate Institute The University of Kansas [17]
Miami Debate Institute Miami University [18]
Minnesota Debate Institute University of Minnesota [19]
Missouri State University Debate Institute (MSDI) Missouri State University [20]
National Symposium for Debate Colorado College [21]
Rebel Debate Institute University of Nevada, Las Vegas [22]
Spartan Debate Institute Michigan State University [23]
Stanford National Forensic Institute Stanford University [24]
Texas Debate Collective Texas Debate Collective, 501(c)(3) [25]
Towson International Debate Institute (TIDI) Towson University [26]
University of Michigan Debate Institute (MNDI) University of Michigan [27]
University of Missouri - Kansas City Summer Debate Institute (UMKC-SDI) University of Missouri–Kansas City [28]
University of North Texas Mean Green Workshops (UNT-MGW) University of North Texas [29]
University of Richmond National Debate Institute (URNDI) University of Richmond [30]
University of Texas National Institute of Forensics (UTNIF) University of Texas [31]
Victory Briefs Institute (VBI) Multiple Locations [32]
Wake Forest Institute (WFI) Wake Forest University [33]
Weber State University Debate Camp (WSDI) Weber State University [34]
Whitman National Debate Institute (WNDI) Whitman College [35]
Wyoming Forensics Institute (WFI) University of Wyoming [36]
Northwestern Debate Institute Northwestern University [37]
Summer Forensics Institute Western Kentucky University [38]